Investing in Real Estate is a multi faceted industry. There are companies that will do it for you, there are agents that will invest and take a cut. There are seminars, you could spend years researching the market and waiting.
The best advice that I’ve gathered is to jump in with a small investment, and stay small.
Look for properties in the high $180000-250000’s depending on the location. It seems as though the promised land is Hamilton, but there are other places you could go to get the rental amounts you are looking for.
You will need 20% down, and closing costs. You could do it for less down, but there may be complications. You will also need to do your own research on the tenants that you obtain. It is a very difficult process to get good tenants, and even the good ones can be forgeries. There are many savvy people out there, and serial tenants that know all of the laws to screw landlords and screw the system.
Once you find a good tenants, look at the property as a 5-10 years plan. Usually places like Hamilton that you can afford to buy something decent in that price range, will not have the increase in values that are normal in other hot spots like Toronto & neighbouring cities. So this is why you must look at this as a long term plan. The key is to make sure the rent is paying the mortgage and expenses, and if you can make a $100-$200 dollars or more then you’re in business.
Now years down the road, you repeat this and add more properties like this, and you have yourself investments that will last a lifetime. The key is to be savvy at finding good tenants, and not to get discouraged when you get a bad one.
Another key is to not go to big. The old saying is, don’t put all your eggs in a basket, that is the same thing. If something happens in the market, you are not over exposing yourself. If you are investing in $500-800000 properties, you will be overexposed and if the market crashes or the project goes bad, it will cause you to use your other savings or investments to get yourself out of the hole.
Along the way after you have a few properties, you could also try to do some properties that are condos or townhouses, and try to research different areas. After you have a bunch of properties you must take on a few investor partners, because the banks will give you a hard time after investing in ten or more properties in this country.